Senior Tours

Langer aiming to make more Senior Open history

Langer is not planning on ending his career anytime soon

The German earlier this month became the most successful player in PGA Tour Champions history when he triumphed at the U.S. Senior Open, securing his 46th over-50s title and 12th Senior Major Championship.

In doing so, Bernhard Langer also became the oldest winner ever on PGA Tour Champions and he has no plans to retire anytime soon, with this week’s Senior Open providing another opportunity to make more history as he looks to secure a third victory at Royal Porthcawl, after his triumphs in 2014 and 2017.

Famous names in the field

There are a plethora of Major Champions, Ryder Cup Captains and proven DP World Tour and PGA TOUR winners on show in South Wales this week, including defending champion Darren Clarke who last year became only the fourth man to win both The Open and The Senior Open.

Fellow Open Champion Pádraig Harrington, who won back-to-back Claret Jugs in 2007 and 2008, will bid to join Clarke, Bob Charles, Gary Player and Tom Watson in that illustrious circle of winners, as will Scotland’s Paul Lawrie, the 1999 Champion Golfer of the Year.

The Welsh charge will be led by 1991 Masters Champion Ian Woosnam, as well 2021 Senior Open winner Stephen Dodd, who won his maiden Senior Major on Sunningdale’s Old Course and Bradley Dredge who is this week making his Legends Tour debut after turning 50 earlier this month.

The most recent Legends Tour Order of Merit winner, James Kingston, and the reigning Charles Schwab Cup Money champion Steven Alker will also tee it up on the Welsh coastline this week.

Some quotes of the players

Bernhard Langer: “Experience is important, and you know, we have different experiences. I probably have far more experience than most guys that are playing in the field. The reason being is I turned pro when I was 15 and I’ve been playing on tour since I was 18, so I’ve been playing a lot more tournaments than most of these guys even though they are similar age.

“Secondly, if you win tournaments, it breeds confidence and confidence breeds winning, so it helps to have good experiences, positive experiences. If you’ve been a playing pro for 25, 30 years and you’ve just been kind of mediocre, it’s hard to believe that you can win, I imagine, because you have not won anything yet or not a lot.

“That’s why I believe Tiger Woods was so dominant as well. He was used to winning and expected to win every time he teed it up and it made winning easier because that’s basically all he ever did to a large percentage. While you play 50 or 100 tournaments, and you don’t ever win or you’re not in the heat, all of a sudden you get in the heat and on the leaderboard, then it becomes like, oh, what’s going on and you know so it’s hard to cope with that I think. Some do it better than others but that’s just one part.

“I’m 66 in a couple of weeks. I’ve made millions of golf swings. I haven’t changed my swing. So I don’t need to practice and I’ve already done that swing hundreds of thousands of times. Does that make sense? When I was younger, I was still developing, one month working on this, one month working on that. Always changing, always evolving, and even though to you it would look the same.

“The time isn’t right yet. The goal is to win a few more. If I enjoy what I’m doing and still healthy, I’ll keep going. Right now I still feel well and feel like I can compete and if that’s the case, I’ll keep going and whenever the time is right, I hope I will know it and not bore you with an 82 or 84 and that kind of stuff.”

Pádraig Harrington: “The wetter the golf course, the better, but not the wetter conditions we play. If it rains for the week, rain and wind nullifies my driver because you don’t want to get going sideways. You’d be trying to knock it down all the time. If the rain dries up and the course stays soft, and it’s digging in and staying short into the next set of bunkers, that would play into my hands but I didn’t go out on the golf course and think, this is the golf course for me. I’ve turned up at Champions tour events, and gone, this is an ideal course, and if I don’t give myself a great chance of winning, I’m failing here this week. This is a great links golf course. Ball flight, ball shape, the direction you’re hitting, spin rates are all very important in terms of getting out there. It’s not necessarily raw speed that’s going to do the job.

“I was very happy with the game up through three rounds last week, and you know, then I started working on a few things so I’m with where I’m at. I’m looking forward to getting on the golf course and I could do with a few more putts and all professional golfers say that. I’m waiting to get out there and play. It is an interesting course. There’s a staggering of bunkers everywhere, so it’s not — I don’t necessarily go to a golf course and go, this is the one for me, that I can carry all of the trouble. The trouble is staggered nicely, so you’ve just got to play good golf this week. It doesn’t set up as a huge advantage to me, this golf course.”

Darren Clarke: “I’m looking forward to it. The last time played here at Royal Porthcawl was 1988 in the European Team Championships for Ireland, so I’ve sort of forgotten how wonderful the golf course is.

“I think I said last year whenever I did manage to win it, as soon as I turned 50 my goal and my dream was to win the Senior Open, the British Senior Open after winning the main Open, and I was able to change that last year. That being said, I’d dearly love to defend this week. When you walk into Royal Portrush, there’s a display cap there up on the right-hand side and both my replica Claret Jug and replica Senior Claret Jug are sitting side by side.”

Ian Woosnam: “It’s always great to have a major tournament in Wales. We’ve had the Ryder Cup here a couple of times. It’s a great spot. Let’s hope the rain does go over a little bit.

“Depends where the wind is blowing from. If it’s blowing off the sea it’s very difficult, and especially when you play like the second, third, fourth, they are tricky holes but it’s a lovely area. It’s right on the sea as you can see, and it’s a beautiful part of the world.

“I don’t play much golf these days. It’s more of a challenge getting around walking than playing golf but I’ll try my best and see what I can do.”

Senior Tours

Langer and Jiménez set for Senior Open return

Langer, a two-time Masters Champion, will bid to capture The Senior Open Presented by Rolex for a fifth time next month, with two of his four victories having come at Royal Porthcawl.

Jiménez, a 21-time DP World Tour winner, is looking to win the Major for the second time in his career after clinching victory at St Andrews in 2018, where he finished one shot ahead of Langer.

Langer loves the Senior Open

Langer, a former World Number One with 42 DP World Tour wins to his name, made history at Royal Lytham & St Annes in 2019 as he secured his fourth Senior Open title, overtaking Gary Player and Tom Watson who have both won the Championship three times.

His triumph four years ago was his 11th Senior Major Championship, the most of anyone in the history of the game, and he also set a new milestone as the oldest player to win a Senior Major at the age of 61.

The German picked up his second and third Senior Open titles at Royal Porthcawl in 2014 and 2017 respectively, and he is hoping to complete the hat-trick when he returns to the renowned Welsh links in July.

“I have such fond memories of Royal Porthcawl in 2014 and 2017 and I cannot wait to try and win the Senior Open for the fifth time and third time at this amazing venue,” he said.

“This Senior Open Presented by Rolex is one of the highlights of the year and I am really excited to return to the UK to play in July.

“Royal Porthcawl is one of the best golf courses in the world and one that will test every aspect of your game. I’m relishing the challenge and hopefully I can put on a show for the Welsh crowds again.”

Jimenéz back to where he made his Senior Open debut

Jiménez, a two-time Ryder Cup winner, has two Senior Major titles to his name following victories at the Regions Tradition and Senior Open in 2018, and the Spaniard is relishing the opportunity to add to his back catalogue when he tees it up for the ninth time in this prestigious event.

“Royal Porthcawl will always be special to me because I made my Senior Open debut there in 2014,” he said. “The feeling of winning the Championship in 2018 is something I will never forget and I am incredibly excited to have that opportunity again next month.

“I’ve got some great golfing memories in Wales, including my win at the Wales Open in 2005 and our Ryder Cup victory in 2010 and I’m hoping to make some more this year.”

The duo will join already-announced former Ryder Cup Captains Thomas Bjørn, Colin Montgomerie, José María Olazábal, Darren Clarke, Pádraig Harrington and Ian Woosnam as a star-studded field assembles in South Wales.

Royal Porthcawl is a third time Senior Open host

Royal Porthcawl was founded in 1891 as a nine-hole course before an agreement was made four years later to add another nine holes. In 1909, the club was bestowed the honour of using the prefix Royal – only the second club in Wales to be granted the privilege after Royal St David’s – before hosting its first significant championship in 1951 when The Amateur Championship took place.

This year will mark the third time the venue has hosted The Senior Open Presented by Rolex, with Langer winning in 2014 and 2017. His win in 2014 was by a Championship-record 13 strokes. Northern Ireland’s Clarke will defend his title in South Wales this year, having claimed his maiden Senior Major at Gleneagles in 2022.

Tickets for The Senior Open Presented by Rolex are on sale now, with prices starting at just £25 for adults for championship days. Season tickets, giving holders access to all four championship days plus the Wednesday practice day, are available for only £95. Click here to purchase yours.


Ladies European Tour PGA Tour Champions

Two flagship tournaments of the Moroccan golfing calendar in one great sporting event

The 47th edition of the Hassan II Trophy and the 26th edition of the Lalla Meryem Cup started on Tuesday with the kick-off of the Pro-Am competitions.

During this first day, the Royal Moroccan Golf Federation and the Hassan II Golf Trophy Association also organized a press conference to launch the competitions, in the presence of Mr. Mustapha Zine, Vice President of the RMGF and the ATH; Mr. Miller Brady, President of the PGA Tour Champions; Mr. Joao Pinto, Director of the Hassan II Golf Trophy; and Mr. Jean-Louis Besson, President of the Lalla Meryem Cup. Joao Pinto, Director of the Lalla Meryem Cup; Mr. Hassan El Mansouri, 2nd vice-president of the FRMG and the ATH; the Spanish pro Nuria Iturrioz, winner of the Lalla Meryem Cup Minaudiere in 2019, as well as the Scotsman Colin Montgomerie, former winner of the Hassan II Trophy in 1997.

Maitre Mustapha Zine vice-president of the FRMG and the ATH said that the 2023 edition of the Hassan II Trophy is an exceptional edition. “This year, we begin a new era through the PGA Tour Champions which hosts the most recognized senior players of the golf world and is held in only three countries outside the United States, including Morocco.

For his part, Mr. Miller Brady, President of the PGA Tour Champions, emphasized that the PGA Tour Champions is proud of its partnership with the Royal Moroccan Golf Federation (FRMG) and the Hassan II Trophy Association (ATH) which organize these prestigious sporting events. “Both tournaments are returning to the Royal Golf Dar Es Salam in Rabat, with the participation of the best golfers in the world,” he added.

The legendary Colin Montgomerie expressed his excitement to return to the Royal Golf Dar Es Salam. “I feel proud to return here after winning the tournament in 1997. I really admire this course. Morocco is world famous for its beautiful golf courses in Rabat and Marrakech, and we are looking forward to the competition.

As for Mr. Joao Pinto, director of the Lalla Meryem Cup, he stressed that the 26th edition welcomes this year 96 players of the Ladies European Tour among which the first 5 of the Ranking 2022. “The players are always delighted to participate in the tournament. Morocco has always been an important lever for female talent.

For the Spanish golfer Nuria Iturrioz, she noted that the title of the Lalla Meryem Cup that she won in 2019, is the most important of her career, expressing the wish to repeat this feat in the 2023 edition.

In this sense, Mr. Hassan El Mansouri, 2nd vice-president of the FRMG and the ATH, also stressed that the 2023 edition of the Lalla Meryem Cup is unique because of the participation of seven Moroccan players including three professionals, namely; Ines Laklalech, the rising star of the national golf who won the Lacoste Ladies Open of France within the framework of the Ladies European Tour in 2022 and who qualified for the LPGA for 2023; Maha Haddioui, member of the Ladies European Tour for 10 years and double representative of Morocco in the Olympic Games, as well as Lina Belmati, Moroccan champion in 2022.

Mr. El Mansouri also highlighted one of the novelties of this year: the organization of the “Kids Cup” under the Pro-Am format, with the participation of young golfers from the First Tee program and professional players. “Since 2019, the partnership established with the Non-Profit Organization “First Tee” in the United States has allowed 100 young people to learn life skills through the practice of golf.”
He added that these mechanisms, available in accordance with the instructions of HRH Prince Moulay Rachid, President of the Royal Moroccan Golf Federation, augur a bright future for golf in the Kingdom.

Until Saturday, February 11, the two flagship competitions of the Moroccan golfing calendar will offer a full program that will make this great sporting event one of the richest editions.

The two tournaments are televised every year to more than 650 million households on five continents.

The complete program is available at:

(Text: Trophee Hassan II)

PGA Tour Champions

After months of recovery: Steve Stricker returns to the Champions Tour

These have been tough months for Steve Stricker. After leading the U.S. Ryder Cup team to victory last year, a mysterious illness struck Stricker. The 55-year-old suddenly suffered from a wide range of symptoms: from cough and sore throat to jaundice and an inflammation of the heart. The consequences of these strains were extreme: Stricker could not eat solid food for a long time and lost about 25 pounds. Now the golfer announced his return to the Champions Tour.

Steve Stricker fought against a mysterious disease outbreak

Steve Stricker has had an illness record to show for it since last fall, and it’s not without its challenges. After his Ryder Cup victory as captain of the U.S. team, things went downhill for the then 54-year-old. A mild cough was followed by a high fever and an allergic reaction to a medication. Shortly thereafter, Stricker was informed of very poor liver values and cardiac arrhythmias. His health deteriorated rapidly, while doctors were at a loss as to the cause of this. Stricker spent eleven days in the hospital, after which he felt “like an 85-year-old man.” His doctors announced he would be in rehabilitation for months.

Comeback on the Champions Tour

After Stricker was unable to eat solid food for a while and going to the bathroom had been a challenge for him, a former golf coach suggested he not return to professional sports and take it easy. For Stricker, that wasn’t an option: “That’s not my style, you know? I like to work at things.” For Stricker, one thing was certain: he would return to the Champions Tour. Next week’s Insperity Invitational is expected to be the time, and the twelve-time PGA Tour winner and seven-time Champions Tour winner announced his participation. In Houston, he will be competing for prize money of more than 2 million euros. We will find out in the coming week how well his comeback is going and whether his body can already withstand the rigors of a professional tournament.

European Challenge Tour European Tour Ladies European Tour Ladies Tours Live PGA Tour PGA Tour Champions Top Tours

How the best Scandinavian golfers came out from last week’s events

Last week the LPGA took a break, and the LET Tour received all the attention for the ladies tours. On the men’s side, the CJ Cup tournamnet was a pure show that brought Rickie Fowler (USA) back to the upper part of the leaderboard. Rory McIlroy overtook the top American players, on American soil. The participation of the Scandinavian golfers was not the highest of the year so far. However, Sebastian Söderberg(SWE) and Alexander Björk(SWE) brought some glory home. Söderberg finished T2 at the European Tour tournament of Esterlla Damm Andalucia Masters in Valderrama Golf Course, and Björk made an incredible T4. The best golfers from Denmark, Finlad, Norway, and Sweden are now having some rest to give it all next weekend at the PGA, European, LPGA, and Let Tours.

PGA TOUR: The CJ Cup at Summit

The Irish golfer Rory McIlroy won his 20th tour victory at the PGA Tour event. McIlroy made the exemption to a top 5 on the leaderboard strongly taken by the American players. Viktor Hovland made the Top 20, finishing T18 with a total of 18-under par. Hovland started strong with a bogey-free round of 65 (7-under par), but the luck didn’t last and didn’t manage to push more birdies in. Alex Noren (T59) and Rasmus Hojgaard (63rd) managed to make few birdies along their rounds, but could not lower down the amount of bogeys per round, which made it difficult to rise up on the leaderboard. Noren and Hojgaard signed totals of -10 and -9 respectively.

PGA Tour CJ Cup at Summit
Course The Summit Club, Las Vegas, Nevada (USA)
Prize Money 9.8 Mio US-Dollar (8.4 Mio EUR)
Champion Rory McIlroy (Northern Ireland)
Scandinvian  players Viktor Hovland (T18), Alex Noren (T59), Rasmus Hojgaard (63rd)

European Tour: Andalucía Masters

The Estrella Damm N.A. Andalucía Masters was played at the golf course of Real Club Valderrama, which plays at Par 71. To the surprise of the Scandinavian field, Sebastian Soderberg shocked the public coming out of the blue with scores of 70-69-72-70 to finish T2, only 3 shots behind the leader, Matt Fitzpatrick. Also from Sweden, his fellow teammate Alexander Björk made a T4 with a total of 2-under par. Real Club Valderrama was in perfect shape, definitely set up for professional golfers of high calibre. Other players from Denmark such as Thomas Bjorn, Nicolai Hojgaard, and Lucas Bjerregaard did not make the cut this time. Thomas Bjorn was in first line after the last player who moved forward into the last two rounds.

European Tour Andalucía Masters
Course Real Club Valderrama (Spain)
Prize Money 3 Million EUR
Champion Matt Fitzpatrick
Scandinvian  players Sebastian Soderberg (T2), Alexander Björk (T4), Joachim B. Hansen (T15)

Ladies European Tour: Aramco Team Series

Across the Atlantic the Ladies European Tour competed in New York after a week off from playing. Glen Oaks Club hosted the event and had a stellar field assembled. Marianne Skarpnord from Norway, together with the Sollheim Cup star Anna Nordqvist (SWE) finsihed T7 with a total of 5-under par. Krista Bakker (FIN) finished T17. Bakker started with a round of even-par (72), Bakker improved in her second round playing under par (70), but the nerves of the last round did not allow her to climb higher on the leaderboard, as she closed up the Aramco Team Series with a scorecard of 1-over par (73).

EU Ladies Tour Aramco Team Series
Course The Glen Oaks Club, New York (USA)
Prize Money 800,000 USD (692,076 EUR)
Champion Charley Hull (ENG)
Scandinvian  players Anna Nordqvist (T7), Marianne Skarpnord (T7), Krista Bakker (T17)
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Champions Tour: SAS Championship

The SAS Championship was held in Cary, North Carolina at the Prestonwood CC. The SAS Championship is part of the Champions Tour, where the legends play. The sport of golf has not always been popular in the Scandinavia Area (Denmark, Finland, Norway, Sweden). However, it is slowly becoming more of an interest for the younger generations. For that reason, there are not yet many golfers that participate with the legends. However, Robert Karlsson (SWE) is a pioneer on the Scandinavian golf. During his first round, Karlsson signed a scorecard with more birdies than pars on it, but a couple of bogeys limited his result to 6-under par. The following two rounds, the Swedish player finished 4-over par and even-par on the last, for a total of 2-under par (66-76-72).

PGA Tour CJ Cup at Summit
Course Prestonwood Country Club Cary, North Carolina (USA)
Prize Money 2.1 Mio US-Dollar (1.8 Mio EUR)
Champion Lee Janzen(USA)
Scandinvian  players Robert Karlsson (T34)
Senior Tours

Star names announced for Farmfoods European Senior Masters 2021

The Farmfoods European Senior Masters 2021 has announced the first part of its star studded lineup with crowds set to return.

Running from 30th September to the 3rd October 2021, the esteemed golfing event will once again take centre stage at the Forest of Arden, Meriden, with none of other than Peter Baker, three-time European tour winner, as host. 

“I’m delighted to welcome back players and spectators to the European Senior Masters,” said Baker, who has hosted the contest every year to date.

“During the days of the pandemic, golf was one of the main sporting highlights for fans to enjoy from the comfort of their own sofas, but nothing beats being there in person.

“It’s therefore with great pleasure to say that not only do we have some of the best seniors in the game in action, but also, that fans will be able to experience it all first-hand, live and in person.”

Located at the stunning Forest of Arden Marriott Hotel & Country Club, the four-day ESM event will certainly be a spectacle for golfing enthusiasts. 

Ian Woosnam OBE, Paul Lawrie OBE and Jarmo Sandelin are just some of the players who will be aiming for the prize this year, with a €150,000 total prize fund and an impressive €50,000 for the winner.

Last time out, Thomas Levet took the 2019 title, one shot clear of Markus Brier in second, with Lawrie, Sandelin, and Woosnam sharing third place.

Luckily, spectators will finally be allowed to come and watch the action unfold, with tickets costing just £20 for all four days, or £10 per day. 

The event format is as follows: 

Day one (Thursday): Pro-Am team event. One pro player will join three amateurs to play one round of the course, and whichever team tops the leader board wins the day.  

Day two/three (Friday/Saturday): The Alliance. This is where the action steps up a notch. Over the course of two days, one pro is paired with one amateur, and both players will traverse the course together, playing one round on both days. The pro’s scores count on the main leader board and the amateurs play for an amateur prize. After the play has finished on Saturday, the winning amateur will receive their prizes before stepping aside for the last day. 

Day four (Sunday): Final day’s play. Only professionals will play on this day, which will consist of one more round of the course. Whoever tops the leader board at the end of the day wins the title and prize money.  

With just over a month to go, event organisers Champions UK plc spoke of the preparation in delivering the high-profile event:

“We’re all busy preparing the final touches for the tournament,” said John Hayes, CEO of leading brand agency Champions UK plc.

“It’s exciting to see so many of our sponsors return to the iconic Forest of Arden course. It’s certainly shaping up to be an event to remember.”

Sponsors of the event include Lord’s Taverners, a leading disability sports charity and Farmfoods.

For sponsorship opportunities, please contact [email protected]

To join us at this year’s tournament, please head to the tickets page:  

Ladies Tours

Henrik Stenson Congratulates Annika Sörenstam On Her Victory

Stenson gives a heart warming congratulations to his fellow Swedish golfer, Annika Sörenstam. Sörenstam shot a 4-under-par 68 to go wire-to-wire and coast to an 8-shot victory at the third U.S. Senior Women’s Open. “Everything felt so good.. and today I really felt like I played very, very well. To come in here on Sunday knowing what I had to do and I did it, obviously I’m very happy” said Sörenstam when interviewed after receiving the championship trophy for the Senior Women’s Championship 2021 which was played at Brooklawn Country Club.

Ladies Tours

Laura Davies: “feels like going back 30 years when I first got on Tour..”

Brooklawn Country Club

THE MODERATOR: Good afternoon. We are here with 2018 champion Laura Davies. It’s been two years since we’ve had this event, but let’s jump back to 2018. What do you remember about that win?

LAURA DAVIES: Just an unbelievable week. I played probably some of the best golf of my life in any tournament I’ve ever played in, and it just so happened to be in that inaugural U.S. Senior Open and one of the highlights of my career. I never thought I’d be saying that, but it’s true.

THE MODERATOR: Now with this one-year break and we’re back, how does it feel to be back with this group at this championship?

LAURA DAVIES: It’s brilliant. We all missed it last year for sure, but for obvious reasons nothing we can do about it.

But played the course this morning. See a lot of the old faces I haven’t seen, getting on for two years now, and yeah, it’s just nice. It feels comfortable. It feels like going back 30 years when I first got on Tour because it’s the same group of players.

THE MODERATOR: Talk about the course and what it’s going to take to be successful here.

LAURA DAVIES: You’ll have to putt well. You’ll have to keep it — not even short of the pins, pin high, because short you’re coming off the front, long you’ve got no putt, so distance control will be a massive key.

Fairways are generous. Par-5s are reachable, some of them. There’s a couple that are probably lay-ups, but overall just a very fair test, apart from the greens. I don’t know if they’re fair, but they’re there for sure. They’re going to be a huge part this week.

Q. Do you not like the fact that you can’t hit it above the pin? Is that the unfairness of it?

LAURA DAVIES: Oh, no, I’m not saying it’s unfair by any means, but you just know what you’ve got to do. Pin high is your friend. Short and long is definitely not your friend. You can even miss it pin high and still have some easy chips, especially if you miss it to the low side of the green. But that’s what the practice rounds are all about. Very important this week to get to know the course and get to know — not that you’re ever trying to miss a green, but the safe side for some of the tougher pins.

But no, no, don’t get me wrong, the greens are what they are, but we now have to deal with some serious problems around them if you get a bit scrappy with your distance control.

Davies is excited to get back out there

Q. Is there excitement because of the year off and to get back out and be competitive and play the tournaments that you can?

LAURA DAVIES: Yeah, definitely. I’ve played — I don’t know the exact number, but I think this is my 12th tournament in two years because I’ve not been playing the LPGA because I’m fed up with people sticking things up my nose and down my — it’s just all of the COVID testing is just — it puts you off. It really does.

I’ve tended not to play that much. So now having said that, the chance to come and play here — I even withdrew from Evian last week just in case I got COVID or anything and I really wanted to play in this event, so I withdrew from a major, which if you’d have told me that 10 years ago I’d say don’t be ridiculous, but that’s how important this one is to me and all the other players.

THE MODERATOR: One unique part of this event is as women turn 50 we’re seeing new faces. Talk a little bit about that class that’s coming in, Pat, Catriona, Annika and what it means for the future of this championship.

LAURA DAVIES: It’s the lifeblood of this tournament. You have to have the — I was initially keen on the 45-year-olds getting in. I thought that would have been a good mark, but USGA stood firm and that’s fine.

Maybe the first couple of years the field was a little bit weaker from the pro ranks. A lot of the great amateurs still played, but now we’ve got the big guns are coming, Annika — talking the distance control, could be right up her alley this week because that was the mark of her game.

It’s just lovely that the older players, we’ve got the youngsters to go up against now. Poor old JoAnne, she’s 80-odd, so she’s really got some youngsters to go against.

Q. This is a lot of kind of a homecoming for you guys this week. It seems like this is almost a sorority; everybody is friends, everybody is cutting up, having a lot of fun. How exciting is it for you to be back kind of amongst friends and amongst people you care about after such a hard year last year?

LAURA DAVIES: Yeah, it’s absolutely brilliant. Like I said, it’s the girls I used to play with 30 years ago when I was a rookie on the LPGA Tour, so yeah, it’s just really nice. There’s faces I haven’t seen for a very long time. Obviously they’ve probably only just turned 50; might have seen them on a few of the Legends events, but everyone is just having fun because we know we’re lucky, we’re 50 and we’re still playing top tournament golf, and we appreciate that.

Q. How difficult is it to stage a tournament that’s challenging for an Annika, people who are 50, and yet still someone like a JoAnne still has a place in it? How difficult is it to kind of walk that line and stage an event like this?

LAURA DAVIES: I think the distances we’re playing, they’ve done it pretty well. I’ve only played, to be fair, 13 holes because I’m going to play the last six or seven tomorrow as practice.

But the distance is if you hit the fairways — I think if the shorter hitters start missing fairways, they’re going to have some real problems, but if you can hit the fairways, I think distance-wise it’s a very, very fair course. If the longer hitters, the younger players can start hitting the fairways a lot further down, then the scoring might be really good like it was in Chicago.

But you know, you just do your best and hope everyone enjoys their week. Obviously some of the older players, they’re not looking to win it, they’re looking to have a really good week and hopefully make the cut. That’s the way I feel on the LPGA Tour now; if I have a good week I’ve made the cut and have a chance to have a decent finish on Sunday, and that’s maybe the way some of them are feeling this week.

Q. I guess it begs the question will you continue to play when you’re Joanne’s age?

LAURA DAVIES: Oh, absolutely, yeah, I can’t wait. Me and JoAnne, she’ll be 100, I’ll be about 80-odd. It’ll be great, though. I can’t wait for that match.

Interview transcript by

Senior Tours

Royal Aberdeen to host Scottish Senior Open

Royal Aberdeen Golf Club will provide the setting for the 2021 Scottish Senior Open hosted by Paul Lawrie, when the Legends Tour returns to the venue for the first time in 26 years from September 10-12, 2021.

The 2021 Scottish Senior Open marks professional golf’s return to Balgownie Links – one of two courses at Royal Aberdeen – after it hosted the first three editions of the Scottish Senior Open from 1993-1995, The 2005 Senior Open, the 2011 Walker Cup and the 2014 Scottish Open.

Aberdeen native and 1999 Open Champion Paul Lawrie, who is an Honorary Member of Royal Aberdeen, takes on hosting duties as well as returning to the event as defending champion, after winning his first Legends Tour title in the 2019 edition at Craigielaw Golf Club.

Royal Aberdeen Golf Club has a rich and storied history having been initially founded in 1780, making it the sixth-oldest golf club in the world, before receiving royal patronage in 1903. It was originally designed by the Simpson brothers, Archie and Robert of Carnoustie, and re-bunkered and lengthened by James Braid.

The renowned front nine at Balgownie Links is widely regarded as one of the best in the world as it weaves through the wonderful dune formation down towards the sea, while the inward nine boasts spectacular views of the Aberdeenshire landscape.

There will be opportunities to play alongside the professionals in both the pre-tournament Pro-Am and the Alliance Pro-Am, where amateur players are given the opportunity to play alongside the stars of the Legends Tour in tournament play.

Mark Aspland, Head of the Legends Tour, said: “We are incredibly excited to be returning to Royal Aberdeen for the first time in 26 years for the 2021 Scottish Senior Open hosted by Paul Lawrie.

“It is a club steeped in history and is a true gem in a country which is inundated with outstanding golf courses. We thought it was important to take this event somewhere which means something to Paul, as tournament host, and having a venue of such stature on his doorstep makes complete sense.

“Paul will be a fantastic host and I am sure he will be working closely with Keith Grant and his team at Royal Aberdeen to ensure we enjoy a brilliant event in September.”

Paul Lawrie, tournament host and defending champion, said: “I am incredibly excited to be given the opportunity to host the Scottish Senior Open at Royal Aberdeen Golf Club, which is such a wonderful venue.

“It is a truly stunning golf course and being a local lad, it is a venue close to my heart and I cannot wait to welcome my fellow Legends Tour players to Aberdeenshire in September.

“I am looking forward to working closely with Keith Grant and his team at Royal Aberdeen, as well as Mark Aspland and the Legends Tour, to deliver the best event possible and help to show off our region.”

Richard Noble, Captain of Royal Aberdeen Golf Club, said: “We are delighted to be welcoming the Scottish Senior Open to Balgownie Links in September 2021, with a field including 1999 Open Champion Paul Lawrie, who will be defending the title he won at Craigielaw in 2019.

“We hope that by September fans will be able to attend the event and support the venue as they have done in the past, when we have proudly been host to The Senior Open, Scottish Open, the Walker Cup and The Amateur Championship.”

Paul Bush, Director of Events at VisitScotland, said: “It’s exciting to see the Scottish Senior Open heading to such an iconic venue as Royal Aberdeen in 2021.

“The Scottish Senior Open has long been an important part of Scotland’s world-class golf event portfolio and it is great to see it return this year. We look forward to working with colleagues at the Legends Tour to support them in delivering the best possible event this September.”

(Text: European Tour Communications)

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Legends Tour announces initial part of 2021 schedule

The Legends Tour today announces the first part of its International Schedule for 2021, marking the return of over-50s professional golf in Europe following the cancellation of the Tour’s 2020 season.

It follows the ground-breaking joint venture between Staysure Group CEO Ryan Howsam and the European Tour earlier this year, when Howsam acquired a controlling stake in the Staysure Tour which was rebranded as the Legends Tour, placing golf’s most iconic names at the forefront of the brand. 

Some of those iconic names, including Major Champions, former World Number Ones and Ryder Cup Captains, will host Legends Tour events in 2021 where amateurs will be able to tee it up alongside their golfing heroes in the innovative Alliance Pro-Am format. 

The season will begin in Austria when the Riegler & Partner Legends takes place from May 7-9 at Golf Club Murhof, with the Tour returning to the venue for the second time after its first appearance on the schedule in 2019. The Italian Senior Open will take place a week later from May 14-16 at a venue to be confirmed, before the first Senior Major Championship of the year, the KitchenAid Senior PGA Championship at Southern Hills Country Club, Tulsa, Oklahoma, from May 27-30. 

June will begin with a return to Jersey for the first time since 2016 for the ICL Jersey Legends at La Moye Golf Club from June 4-6, before the Tour makes its first trip of the year to mainland Britain for the Farmfoods European Legends Links Championship at Trevose Golf & Country Club, England, from June 18-20. 

The U.S. Senior Open will take place at Omaha Country Club, Nebraska, from July 8-11, while the long-running Swiss Seniors Open at Golf Club Bad Ragaz, will return for its 24th edition at a date to be confirmed in July. 

The WINSTONgolf Senior Open returns to WINSTONLinks, Vorbeck, Germany, from July 16-18, one week prior to The Senior Open Presented by Rolex at Sunningdale Golf Club, England, from July 22-25. The Championship will be hosted at Sunningdale one year on from its original date following its cancellation due to the COVID-19 Pandemic. 

The prestigious Staysure PGA Seniors Championship will take place at Formby Golf Club, Southport, England, from July 29-August 1, moving from London Golf Club where it has been hosted since its return to the International Schedule in 2018. 

Former Ryder Cup Captain Paul McGinley will then welcome the Legends Tour to the island of Ireland for the first time since 2010 when the Irish Legends Presented by The McGinley Foundation takes place in Donegal at the stunning Rosapenna Hotel & Golf Resort from August 20-22. 

The Scottish Senior Open Hosted by Paul Lawrie will take place in September where the 1999 Open Champion will look to defend his maiden over-50s title which he picked up at Craigielaw in 2019. The date and venue for the event are still to be confirmed. The Farmfoods European Senior Masters will take place once again at Forest of Arden Marriott Hotel & Country Club, England, from October 1-3. 

Mark Aspland, Head of the Legends Tour, said: “We have been extremely excited to announce this schedule after the cancellation of our 2020 Schedule and we cannot wait to begin again next year. 

“We have used the time productively to strengthen our schedule for 2021 and give our members as many playing opportunities as possible. 

“I must place on record my thanks to all the partners, sponsors and federations who have made this schedule possible. We have a fantastic mix of old and new events and we are looking forward to visiting places we know well and venues and territories that are new to many of us. 

“We will be concluding the 2021 season with the Indian Ocean Swing Tour Championship events and we are working hard to add events through the season, particularly in the Autumn. Further announcements will be made early in 2021.” 

Ryan Howsam, Group CEO, said: “I would firstly like to say well done to Mark Aspland and his team for putting this schedule together. Following the announcement of the joint venture in September, we have been working together on the brand and marketing channels to improve the commercial value of the Tour and therefore enhance the playing opportunities for the Legends Tour members. We have identified several exciting projects that will enhance the Legends Tour over the coming years.

“There will be plenty of opportunity for amateur golfers to get involved in Legends Tour events, from playing in the Celebrity Pro-Ams, teeing it up in Alliance events and joining the Legends Club, our exclusive Membership Club for people who desire a more in-depth involvement in the Tour and our events.”

For anyone wishing to purchase playing spots in Celebrity Pro-Ams, Alliance events or to enquire about Legends Club Membership, please email Legends Tour concierge via: [email protected].

(Press release: Legends Tour)